Top 7 Instagrammable Museums

Spice up your Instagram game with these SoCal exhibits

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Living on the edge while at the Museum of Illusions. Photo courtesy of Rashmi Vohra.

Pop-up museums, also known as “Instagram museums,” are changing the way we view and interact with art. The trendy exhibits deliver immersive art installations that put the consumer right in the center of the action. Most pop-up exhibitions fall into one of three groups: flashy gimmicks, high art and surprisingly cool—with a few that overlap.

Unlike traditional museums where visitors are discouraged from touching the exhibits—and even photographing artwork—these selfie museums are designed to be hands-on with no shortages of insta-worthy photo-ops.

If you’re into this growing trend, or the hype has made you curious, here are seven Instagram museums worth visiting within the greater Los Angeles area:

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The infinity mirror at the Museum of Selfies. Photo courtesy of Yelp user Charly S.

The Museum of Selfies describes itself as “70 percent Instagram palace and 30 percent institute of learning.” The museum tries to make good on its museum label by providing sensational art installations that examine the 40,000-year history, science, culture and art of self-representation. Of course, the pop-up has plenty of Instagram-ready moments in which guests recreate some of the most common selfie-poses such as the “bathroom selfie,” “food selfie” or the “angel wing selfie.” If that’s not enough pop culture for you, how about a seat on an iron throne made of selfie sticks that takes inspiration from “Game of Thrones”?

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Flutter Experience. Photo courtesy of Yelp user Laura C.

Minutes away from LACMA is the contemporary and innovative Flutter Experience, and it’s different than your typical pop-up museum—it is unique and special. The mission statement is “Where art and happiness meet.” It was founded on the intention of doing good, and as a result, the Flutter Experience partnered with the Born This Way Foundation in which a portion of the proceeds goes towards combating mental health stigmas. The exhibit hosts 15 artists who were challenged with a theme entitled “Play Date,” which according to the museum’s website, results in a “sensory journey filled with nostalgia, technology, interaction, and fun.” Weekly events are held within the art space that ranges from live plays, painting classes, healing yoga, and classic movie showings. Guests are welcomed to rest, relax, rejuvenate and above all, have fun.

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Donut worry be happy. Photo courtesy of Yelp user Angelica C.

Cheat Day Land is for the gym rats and the calorie counters, and those in between, who want to indulge vicariously through a junk-food themed pop-up museum. Playing on the idea of the infamous “cheat day,” this family-owned exhibit offers a guided photo-op tour that features a life-sized donut gym, oversized french fries and many more cheat day-centric exhibits that capture the perfect photo.

Each ticket for Cheat Day Land comes with a skilled tour guide, who proves to be the best photographer, and is instrumental in helping visitors capture the best image. Even though there’s nothing actually to eat within the exhibit, each tour ends with sweet treats and coffee.

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The Museum of Illusions. Photo courtesy of Merwin R. Videña

Step right up to the fascinating world of optical illusions where the eyes see things that the brain cannot comprehend. The mind-bending Museum of Illusions is for those who have the willpower and energy to pose standing, bending, jumping or crawling. The more outrageous the pose, the better the photograph. 3D and optical illusions create a fantastical backdrop and make for the craziest photo-ops with scenes like the upside-down room that creates a gravity-defying illusion. All the exhibits were inspired by movies, current events, cartoons and more.

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Life is but a digitized dream. Photo credit: Museum of Dream Space.

The Museum of Dream Space is geared towards the digital arts. Inspired by the work of avant-garde Japanese artist Yayoi Kusama, who is infamously known for her infinity rooms, this pop-up is supported by high-end technology and projectors. Visitors are surrounded by digital technology that is made to free the limitations of physical media. The projection-style art is filled with eye-popping photo-ops that illustrate a dream-like experience.

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The highs and lows of the Museum of Weed. Photo credit: Museum of Weed.

With the legalization of cannabis in California, it is no wonder that a museum was built in honor of such a monumental cultural change. For those who want their “weedies” fix comes the thoughtfully curated Museum of Weed, presented by Weedmaps. The museum features seven Instagram-worthy immersive exhibits that deep-dive into the historical timelines and the cultural importance of the cannabis revolution. The museum covers the timeframe from the pre-prohibition period, the reefer madness era and ends with the legalization movement all while providing a creative and unique experience for museum-goers. Visitors are welcomed to visit the “munchie-chic” café and stop by the gift shop where they can buy weed-related merchandise. For those who need to ask, the Museum of Weed does not sell nor provide cannabis or CBD related products.

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The visual artistry of Android Jones. Photo credit: Wisdome LA.

Samskara at Wisdome LA is an interactive experience that feels likes a psychedelic trip without the side effects. The pop-up exhibit is a massive art park centered in the Arts District of downtown Los Angeles and spreads across five domes that present digital art, virtual reality, and trippy music to accompany the visual spectacle. Created by the “digital alchemist” Android Jones, Samskara is said to push the boundaries of consciousness by challenging what you see, what you fear and who you are.